During the early years of bringing up my firstborn, I befriended a number of enlightened teachers and moms who influenced me in the warm and wonderful ways of early Waldorf education. You might imagine the enduring benefits eventually both my children received in their preschools as they absorbed themselves in bread baking and painting with watercolor; in wool and silk and wooden playthings; in song and puppet shows; and long unstructured stretches outdoors in woods and sandpits, no matter snow or sunny weather.
With my second-born, I discovered and embraced the tenants of Simplicity Parenting, which would articulate what Waldorf influences and my innate parenting instincts already told me. I quietly adapted a number of Simplicity philosophies to our family and home life by thinking more intentionally about how home environment, routine, scheduling, and media use influenced our children’s well-being. I strive today (imperfectly) for that raised consciousness to guide parenting decisions, large and small. What may be the most rewarding part of my adapted version of Simplicity Parenting – which I’ll call “parenting simply” – are the sparks of compassion and imagination I see still shinning in my girls’ eyes today. Something is going right.
How on earth does parenting simply mesh with cf parenting? While Simplicity parents get to walk a path to less stress and more relaxation, parenting a child with health issues only introduces complications and concerns. That much is true. Parenting simply must, by nature, conflict with the complexities of cf. Not necessarily. My experience has been the opposite. Parenting simply has helped me and us to balance and ease the many burdens of cf. It keeps the core focus on quality family life. It’s as simple as that.